We had the good fortune of connecting with Kevin Palmer and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kevin, any advice for those thinking about whether to keep going or to give up?
How bad do you want it? If you have a solid vision that you truly believe in and the impact that it can have on your life and even the entire planet, to me, giving up shouldn’t be an option. What it is, is to continue to modify, grow and learn from your failures. Once progress has taken place, the thought of giving up leads you to the place of regret. Regret will haunt you for the rest of your life. You have to ask yourself “will I hide behind excuses that I didn’t complete my mission or will I stand behind that I will continue to give it all I got and I will exhaust all resources possible until I no longer exist”.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My Journey as an artist began as a young child at the age of 6, in which I attended a youth program at the College of Creative Studies located in Detroit Michigan. Throughout my art path, I was introduced to and fascinated by various art styles, ranging from fine art, caricature, animation, comic art, anime and so much more. Many if not all of those styles have influenced my work in some capacity. Another big influence of my work is my study and exposure to black history and culture and hip hop, I always give credit to my big sister for that. Within my body of work, you will find a picture of Martin Luther King on a royal throne, Black Panther Party subject matter, and illustrations of freedom such as Nat Turner breaking his chains with a title displayed “fight for what’s right”. Hip Hop showed me how to be expressive and fearless and to go beyond the limits with my art.
April of 2005 I decided to follow a couple of my close friends to Phoenix Arizona to attend the Art Institute of Phoenix. in which I received my Bachelor’s degree in Media Art and Animation. After I graduated in 2008 I began my freelance journey under my brand company KPStudios. I’ve serviced numerous projects from Children’s Book Illustration, Design work for company branding, pre-production work for independent animated films, music videos, and IP development for creatives in Hollywood.
In 2017 I took a leap of faith to move to California for 3 years until my return to Arizona, and that’s when my career and personal growth really took off. I gained a lot of valuable relationships within the animation industry. I went to every art event I could attend and collected a trash bag full of business cards. I then realized the power of having good relationships and being a genuinely good person can take you a long way. Also surrounding yourself with people that are better than you allows you to not become complacent in your growth. On the outside, I’m considered a workhorse by many of my peers, but on the contrary, I have a deep-rooted passionate drive in what I do, as being an artist is who I am. One of my favorite quotes from D. Viscott is “:The purpose of life is to discover your gift, the work of life is to develop it, the meaning of life is to give your gift away”.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Most of my favorite activities in phoenix are being in the mix of the creative community. The first Friday activities in downtown Phoenix are always a great time to start the month. During that day, the Phoenix Art Museum is open for free for a limited time and the night lights up with Art along the Roosevelt Row. The New studio space called the Bright Side Studio is a great addition that opened this year that expanded more opportunities for artists. And if you’re into great music and poetry check out The Groove Theory event hosted at the Crescent Ballroom and Poetic Soul Wednesdays.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I firmly believe you don’t become successful by yourself, as no man’s an Island. You need support from people. People that are truly in your corner. I will begin with my Parents, Stephanie, Ron Palmer, brother Jamie Palmer, Grandma Lucille, Grandpa Willie Hall, and Great-Grandma Katie. Additional family of the Palmer, Halls, and Clarks. My best friends and colleagues, Joey Cazeno, Michelle Melton, Jelani Parham, Jermaine Staten, Vannick Douglas, Richie Jimenez, Brandon Mccreary, Jason Wolf, Shawnna Mills, Rita Bastian, Ron Myrick, Mike Davis, Neil Wade, Jynette lewis, Jerry Lee Brice. The entire Corjl staff, My Friends, and Teachers from the Art Institute of Phoenix. Anyone and everyone that supported me throughout out my life. I am grateful.